Author(s):Eells JT, González-Quevedo A, Santiesteban Freixas R, McMartin KE, Sadun AA. [Folic acid deficiency and increased concentrations of formate in serum and cerebrospinal fluid of patients with epidemic optical neuropathy]. Rev Cubana Med Trop. 2000 Jan-Apr;52(1):21-3. Spanish. PMID 11107889
Journal: Revista Cubana De Medicina Tropical, Volume 52, Issue 1, 2000
We studied 62 patients aged 48 years as an average and diagnosed with bilateral optical neuropathy during an epidemics in Pinar del Río province. Of these patients, 42 showed the optical form whereas 20 had the mixed form of optical neuropathy. We researched into the levels of formate and folate in serum and cerebrospinal fluid samples and we found a marked deficiency of folates in more than 50% of samples and high formate concentration levels in almost 25% of samples. We concluded that nutritional shortages that lead to a reduction of folates, and the intake of small amounts of methanol in alcoholic drinks could lead to lacking energetic states which would facilitate that the optical nerve be affected and the epidemic optical neuropathy appear.